Winter Games Athletes
Berger could emerge as one of the major stars at the Sochi Games. Her goal is to cap her career by sweeping the individual gold medals. That pursuit should be aided by the retirement of German glamour girl Magdalena Neuner, a longtime rival who won two golds in Vancouver. Berger made her second straight Olympic appearance in 2010 and earned her first gold in the individual event. She finished fifth in the pursuit, 18th in the mass start and 33rd in the sprint. Berger is a much-improved biathlete now as evidenced by a powerhouse performance at the 2013 world championships in which she won four golds and two silvers. With the addition of the mixed relay event, she could take home six golds - which would surpass U.S. speedskater Eric Heiden’s Olympic record of five from 1980. Berger’s form during the latter part of the World Cup season hasn’t been her best. She has already announced that this will be her final season even though the record of 42 individual World Cup victories set by Sweden’s Magdalena Forsberg is within reach. Berger has not been happy about being hounded by the biathlon press with questions about whether her retirement is final. Her brother, Lars, is a cross-country skier who won a relay silver at the Vancouver Games.